Follow bug sparks Twitter chaos

If you’re following a few people you’ve never heard of on Twitter this morning, a bug on the social-networking site is to blame.

Follow bug sparks Twitter chaos

Twitter users were thrown into confusion yesterday evening, when follower counts were universally set to zero, making it look as if users had – rather like the Prime Minister – lost all their friends. The site was also refusing to allow people to follow new users.

However, it’s emerged that the temporary follower reset was deliberately evoked by Twitter to counter a serious bug. “We identified and resolved a bug that permitted a user to ‘force’ other users to follow them,” claims a post on the Twitter status page. Celebrity accounts – including those of Twitter CEO Evan Evan Williams, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and Mr Demi Moore, Ashton Kutcher – were among those who suddenly found themselves unwittingly following people.

Twitter claims to have fixed the bug and insists that accounts with protected tweets were not compromised. However, it appears Twitter isn’t entirely confident that it has managed to eradicate all of the unwanted followees.

“We’ve finished our clean up of the spurious followings generated as a result of this bug,” the company states. “If you are still seeing folks you are following who you didn’t choose to follow, please use the block or unfollow tools to remedy.”

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